The National Capital yet again woke up to a very poor air quality category on Monday morning with forecasters indicating that this may further get pushed to the ‘severe’ zone.
System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting And Research (SAFAR) noted a 342 quality index for the day, while it was 367 and 397 for Sunday and Saturday respectively, noting the worst since January 2022.
In the wake of rising pollution levels, the Delhi Fire Service on Sunday was asked to sprinkle water in as many as 13 hotspots in the city. At least 22 fire tenders were rushed to the identified pollution hotspots, as reported by PTI.
With the continuous worsening of the air quality levels, the vehicular emissions from government buses operating in Uttar Pradesh were held accountable by Delhi’s Environment Minister Gopal Rai.
Central government’s air quality panel, on Saturday, therefore, directed authorities to impose curbs on construction and demolition activities in Delhi-NCR under stage III of the Graded Response Action Plan.
While we can still expect the pollution levels to reach the next stage in the ‘Severe Plus’ category or Stage IV, this would mean a no-no to trucks into the city, 50 percent office staff to work from home, closure of educational institutions and the Odd-Even policy for vehicles.
The Commission for Air Quality Management (CAQM) is also looking into imposing restrictions on the BS III petrol and BS IV diesel four-wheelers plying in Delhi-NCR.